Why Is My McAfee Icon Red: How to Fix It

Why Is My McAfee Icon Red: How to Fix It
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McAfee Antivirus is known to be the best antivirus software on the market and with its advanced scanning technology. It removes both known and unknown viruses from your computer system. The best part of McAfee Anitvirus is that it provides you with an easy way to check the protection status of your computer by showing an icon in the system tray that turns red whenever your computer possesses a security risk or threat. There could be several reasons for a red McAfee icon like the virus definitions are not up to date, real-time scanning is disabled, script scanning is disabled, spyware and other unknown threat scanning is disabled, or it may be a warning indicator.

People often ask me, Why is my McAfee icon red? or How do I fix a red McAfee icon? Depending on the reason, there are several ways to fix a red McAfee icon on your computer system. Out of the above-mentioned reasons, the most common reason for the McAfee icon turning red is that an event may have occurred. This event could be a warning that indicates a security breach or triggers about the safety of the system. Below is a step-by-step guide for fixing a red McAfee icon.

Step-By-Step Instructions on Fixing the Red Icon

Follow these step-by-step instructions if you need to answer the question Why is my McAfee icon red?

If the McAfee icon has turned red to warn that an event has occurred, or for some other problem:

Step 1: Locate the McAfee icon in the system tray at the lower right corner of the desktop. The McAfee icon is usually a shield with a ‘V’ on it.

Step 2: Right click this icon. A list of options will appear in the popup menu. From these options, click Open Access Protection Log File.

Step 3: A log will open up that shows the access protection event that turned the McAfee icon into red. As soon as you read the warning event, the red McAfee icon is fixed.

This is a new feature that allows the V-Shield to turn red as soon as an access protection event has occurred. This event could be a warning, a security breach, policy violation or another warning message.

Note: The Open Access Protection Log File option appears only if you have an event message.

Permanently Fix McAfee Red Icon

On-Access Protection alert is an advanced feature provided by McAfee to ensure complete safety of a computer system and the main reason behind turning the McAfee icon red. In order to disable the alert, follow the steps given below.

Step 1: Click Start Menu and move to Programs -> McAfee -> VirusScan Console. Right click the Access-Protection and click Disable. Now, leave the VirusScan Console open.

Step 2: Click Start Menu and select Run. In the run window, type “regedit” without double quotes. This will open up the registry editor window.

Step 3: Find the following key from the left pane of the registry editor window.


Step 4: In the right pane, enter a new DWORD value by right clicking and selecting New -> DWORD value. Enter this: APHitsPeriod as the value.

Step 5: Now, right click on this new value, and set its value to 0. Press OK to save the value. You can now exit the registry window.

Step 6: In the VirusScan console window, re-enable the Access-Protection by selecting Enable. Exit the VirusScan console.

You will now no longer receive event alerts, and your McAfee icon will never turn red.

NOTE: Turning off the red icon feature may free you from the trouble, but you may miss important security warnings that are important for the safety of your system.

Screenshots of McAfee Red Icon

fix red McAfee icon

Images Credit

McAfee application screenshots by McAfee